Campaigners warn of European food and energy crisis

The turmoil in Ukraine should be a wake-up call for Europe's looming fuel and food crisis, campaigners have warned.

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Europe energy imports bill 'will soar to £400bn'

The new report by Oxfam claims that even if governments meet their climate and energy commitments for 2020, Europe's annual energy imports bill will soar from £325 billion to more than £400 billion by 2030 because of rising prices.

At the same time the EU's food import bill could rise as climate change hits countries where much of the bloc's food is produced, the report said, leaving Europe's poor struggling to pay for both heating and food.

Oxfam: 'Europe must break dirty energy addiction'

A pressure gauge shows the flow of natural gas from Russia to Europe. Credit: PA

European countries must work to stop their "dirty energy addiction" and seek alternative fuel sources or the poorest members of society will pay the price, Oxfam have said.

Oxfam's campaigns and policy director Sally Copley said: "Unless Europe acts now to break its addiction to dirty and costly fossil fuels then both Europeans and the world's poorest will pay the price.

"It's in all our interests for Europe to end its reliance on dirty imports and instead develop clean, safe and affordable energy at home."

Oxfam is calling on Europe to agree an energy and climate change package of measures for 2030 that commits to energy savings of 40%, emissions cuts of at least 55% and boosting sustainable renewable energy to 45% of the energy mix.

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Europe needs must 'reassess energy mix' to avoid crisis

Europe imports half its energy, predominantly fossil fuels - and Russia is the EU's top supplier for both oil and gas, with European countries paying more than £200 per person to Russian oil and gas giants last year, Oxfam said.

The over-reliance on fossil fuels worsens climate change which in turn threatens agricultural production and pushes up food prices, the charity warned. The world's poorest people are already suffering greater hunger as a result of climate change, it said

Campaigners warning over future fuel crisis

Armed pro-Russian separatists take position outside the Police barracks in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. Credit: Press Association Images

The turmoil in Ukraine should be a wake-up call for Europe's looming fuel and food crisis, campaigners have warned.

Ahead of the G7 summit, organised by leaders after they decided to boycott a planned G8 summit in Russia this week, Oxfam said tension with Moscow over the situation in Ukraine highlighted the need for Europe to reassess its energy mix.

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